Friday, March 23, 2012

Molly and Her Jaw Distraction

Below is a post with an update on Faith, but in this post, I am focusing on a little Trisomy 18 girl named Molly Miller who just had a jaw distraction.  Her surgery was done at Primary Children's Medical Center in Utah by Dr. Grimmer.  I have been very impressed with how well her surgery has gone.  She was in the hospital for a few days, but is already home.  She will finish distracting then they will remove the portion of the distractor which is turned so the bone can heal and Molly will have a longer jaw.  Her distractors are much different from the ones Faith had.  Molly's distractors are not as visible and are mostly inside her jaw.  This will give her less visible scars, and she even looks pretty comfortable.  I will try to follow her progress for you and parents who have Trisomy 18 children that want to learn about jaw distraction for their children.  When we first looked into jaw distraction for Faith, you could find absolutely nothing on the web about Trisomy 18 and jaw distraction.  Now when you do a search of T18 and jaw distraction, this blog appears first.  So I would like to follow the stories of children like Molly to show more parents how this procedure can change the lives of their children for the positive and keep information on jaw distraction easy for T18 parents to find.  Faith is a dramatically different little girl since her surgery, and I am betting the same for Molly.
Here is Molly with her dad before the surgery.
This is Molly after surgery and still intubated.
Here is a side view of the internal distractor.  The internal allow for less scars, but the external distractors like Faith had allow for better ability to manipulate the jaw in case of problem...blessing Faith had the external one's so it could be manipulated.
This is a bit blurry, but you can see the incision below her ear near the back of her jaw.  This is where the distractor is turned each day to allow the device to move her jaw further out.
This is Molly starting to get happy again even with the jaw distraction.  It just doesn't get more adorable than this.  Molly has an ng tube in her nose to help her eat.  She stopped taking a bottle after the surgery, but I expect she will again use the bottle and have an easier time eating with her jaw the proper length.  You try eating with a short jaw...pretty tough.

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